A living, learning laboratory in San Francisco
CCA’s campus expansion brings together more than 30 academic programs and disciplines, adds new student housing and dining facilities, and transforms our campus to support different modes of learning and making. For the first time in two decades, our distinctive programs in fine arts, design, architecture, and writing will be unified alongside workshops and studios, libraries, and student services in the heart of one of the world's most dynamic cities. This means students will have the broadest possible experience with materials and disciplines they love as well as those they have yet to discover. They’ll learn from a diverse community of thinkers and makers, and have plenty of opportunities to experiment and take creative risks.
Designed by a team led by award-winning architect Jeanne Gang, and set to begin construction in 2022, Double Ground is the centerpiece of our campus expansion. With spaces that Gang calls “creatively hackable,” the open, transparent design will connect our programs in exciting new ways. More versatile spaces are designed to flex along with evolutions in creative practice, and encourage knowledge sharing and experimentation.
Double Ground’s lower level includes shops, studios, and labs that require heavy equipment, which open into shared maker yards. The upper level features a park-like atmosphere with green space and places to gather, adjacent to CCA's main campus building and new classrooms and studios with super-flexible interior spaces. What happens when industrial design meets painting? When an architect collaborates with a ceramicist? These are the kinds of collaborations students will encounter and pursue on our expanded, unified campus.
A residential campus
Secure, convenient, and well-designed student housing is an essential piece of our campus expansion. About half of CCA students call our campus housing home. Newly opened Founders Hall and the apartment-style Blattner Hall enable students to live, learn, eat, study, and relax together as they create social and professional networks they will carry with them throughout their careers.
Inspired by material and community
When designing our expanded San Francisco campus, architects drew inspiration from the materials and strong sense of community found on our historic Oakland campus. The design features cross-laminated timber, a renewable resource that has the warm materiality of wood, and many of the new campus’s shops and studios open into shared maker yards, ideal for teamwork and exploring projects that incorporate different disciplines. Students have access to facilities for ceramics, furniture, jewelry, metal fabrication, rapid prototyping, sculpture, and more all in one area.
A climate-conscious approach
Double Ground’s upper level includes classrooms, galleries, offices, and other spaces. The design makes use of mass timber—layers of compressed, cross-laminated wood—and features wide, exterior walkways that provide natural shade. Compared to concrete or steel, building with mass timber produces fewer greenhouse gas emissions.
We’re also approaching the way our buildings harvest and store clean energy with a climate-conscious mindset. A rainwater reuse system irrigates 65,000 square feet of green space. And rooftop photovoltaics convert solar energy into electricity. As we fine-tune our energy infrastructure, we’re planning for a future in which renewable technologies can be smoothly integrated.
Open green spaces
Filled with plants, Double Ground’s top level includes a network of park-like gardens and plazas. Students can use this green oasis for spontaneous social gatherings, industry meetups, or simply taking in the sun. Plazas are physically connected to the maker yards below through a series of beautifully terraced landscapes.
Community presence and impact
We believe learning and making should happen everywhere and be visible to everyone. So, in addition to making physical collaboration easier, Double Ground supports a free flow of ideas. Flexible spaces on campus can be used for exhibitions, performances, and public programming. We think of Double Ground as an open invitation, attracting ideas from beyond the campus boundaries and encouraging students to meet and work with local craftspeople, business owners, and industry experts.